When you have 4 kids and a crazy schedule, you have to look for a quick & easy meal for dinner and this Cheesy Beefy Pasta Bake is it!
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I am the cook in the house (and practically everything else – hello super mom!) and when we have crazy schedules between my husband’s job, my job, exchanges with my step kiddos, 3 different school schedules, our rambunctious two year old and our daughter’s ABA therapy, we have to find meals that everyone will enjoy that are quick, easy and don’t break the bank.
This delicious Cheesy Beefy Pasta Bake takes only about 40 minutes and makes enough for a family of 6 & leftovers for my husband’s lunch.
This recipe came together on a Wednesday night and I was going through the fridge and pantry to see what I could whip together. I love creating new recipes with items we always have on hand and this one was hands down amazing!
I love making dishes that I know will keep my kids (who seem to eat and then be hungry 5 minutes later) full until they get up in the morning. We try to have the kiddos in bed at 8pm on school nights and they can have either books or tablet for 30 minutes before it is time to go to sleep and the last thing my husband and I want to hear is “I’m hungry” 5 minutes before it is time for them to go to sleep. I was able to check that box off with this Cheesy Beefy Pasta Bake!
My kids love anything pasta so new recipes with pasta is almost always my go-to. I love creating new meals and use items that I already know they love and just create something different for them to try.
I had to make this a little bit different for our little guy due to him not eating dairy so I placed a cup of the ground beef in a small skillet, some pasta and just used some roasted garlic tomato sauce in theirs and added some dairy-free mozzarella cheese on top and mixed it until the cheese melted. He loves to eat the same as his big brothers so I try to make his version as closely the same as our other kiddos and he loved it!
Cheesy Beefy Pasta Bake
*Makes 2 baking dishes – cut in half if you want only 1 baking dish*
– (2.25 lbs.) Ground beef
– (16oz) rigatoni pasta
– (2.5 tsp) garlic salt
– (2 tbsp.) Italian seasoning
– (1 tsp) onion powder
– (1/2 tsp) red pepper flakes
– Pepper to taste
– (2) 24oz jar of Bertolli vodka sauce (put 12oz in a separate bowl)
– (8oz) Mozzarella Cheese
Optional: Parmesan cheese & Oregano
1. preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Start water for pasta & cook according to directions until just almost done (it will finish cooking in the oven)
3. Cook ground beef in a large skillet
4. Once pasta is nearly finished – add to the ground beef
5. Add 1.5 jars of the Bertolli sauce to the ground beef and pasta. stir until well mixed
6. Add mixture to two baking dishes – spread evenly
7. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese evenly on top of the mixture
8. Bake at 375 until cheesy is melted (about 10 minutes)
9. While pasta bake is in the oven – heat the rest of the sauce in a small pot
Optional: place in broiler for 2-4 minutes until cheese is golden brown
10. Serve, top with extra vodka sauce and Enjoy!
Optional: top with fresh parmesan and oregano
**save any leftover vodka sauce in the refrigerator for leftovers 🙂
How to keep & reheat leftovers
– Place leftovers in an air-tight container for up to 4 days
– Add leftovers to skillet, add 1 tbsp. of water at a time if the sauce does not get creamy
– Taste & Serve!
– This is also super yummy with ground sausage
Let me know how your family likes this in the comments!